Be kissed by a seal, splashed by a dolphin and have your photo taken with a python at this family zoo in the center of Lisbon.
The Lisbon Zoo (Jardim Zoologico) has exciting dolphin shows, free-flying birds, pelican feedings and snake handling. The zoo houses more than 2,000 animals across 360 species. Its mission is to protect wildlife while educating and entertaining visitors. The zoo is located right in the city center, so it’s an easy half-day visit and a break from the bustling city streets.
Young children in particular will find plenty to do at this clean and modern zoo. There are daily shows at Dolphins’ Bay, the Reptile House, the Children’s Farm and the Enchanted Forest, where free-flying birds soar overhead. Bring your camera to snap the look of surprise as your child is kissed by a Sea Lion, feeds a pelican or feels a snake slithering through their fingers. The snakes are harmless pythons and watched by handlers.
The dolphin show is a family favorite, with the friendly sea creatures performing tricks and interacting with the trainers as well as splashing the audience. Watch as a dolphin pulls along a boat carrying children while another dolphin jumps over the boat.
The entire family can relax on the zoo train or get a bird’s-eye view of the animals from the cable car. Make sure to check at the entrance for the feeding times of the pelicans, sea lions and more. When you’re ready to refuel, there are shaded areas with picnic tables and benches. Bring your own picnic or buy food at the variety of kiosks and restaurants in the zoo.
Once you’ve seen the animals, leave time to visit the Animax. This is an amusement park located in the zoo but outside the area that houses the enclosures. You’ll find rides for the kids, restaurants, bars, shops and areas for resting and people-watching.
The Lisbon Zoo is located near the Sete Rios train station and metro station in the city center. It is open daily. There is an entrance fee that includes entrance to the Animax.